STAR GONE Everything to know about Akebono Taro's wife ChristianeSUMO wrestler legend and 11-time grand tournament winner Akebono Taro has died leaving WWE fans devastated. His wife of more than two decades, Christiane Reiko Kalina, announced the star's passing in a heartfelt message in April 2024.

Who is Akebono Taro’s wife Christiane Sumo?

Wrestling fans around the world are mourning the loss of legendary sumo wrestler Akebono Taro, who passed away at the age of 54 after battling a cardiac illness for a year.

The 11-time grand tournament winner was a beloved figure in the world of sumo and beyond.

Akebono’s wife, Christiane Reiko Kalina, shared the heartbreaking news of his passing in a touching message in April 2024. The couple had been married for over two decades and shared a strong bond that was evident to those around them.

Christiane, who was born on a US military base in Japan to an American father and Japanese mother, met Akebono while working at the University of Maryland’s campus on the Yokota Air Base. The details of how they first met remain private, as Akebono valued keeping his personal life out of the spotlight.

In February 1998, Akebono announced his engagement to Christiane in a memorable moment at a dinner in Tokyo. The wrestler, dressed in an elegant green kimono, asked Christiane to spend the rest of her life with him, marking the beginning of their journey together.

The couple went on to have three children, two sons, and a daughter, with Christiane being pregnant with their first child at the time of their marriage. Akebono previously shared that he was drawn to Christiane’s dual nationality, as it allowed them to connect with their children in both English and Japanese.

Akebono’s death from heart failure has left fans and fellow wrestlers devastated. The Hawaii-born sumo champion collapsed in Kitakyushu seven years ago and had been battling his cardiac illness ever since. His passing was a loss not only for the sumo world but for the cultural ties he helped strengthen between the United States and Japan.

In a tribute to Akebono, the United States ambassador to Japan, Rahm Emanuel, honored the wrestler as a “giant in the world of sumo” and a proud Hawaiian.

Akebono’s legacy will continue to live on through his achievements in the sport and the impact he had on those who knew and admired him.